I have lowered my expectations on how much will get done on Dauntless before we launch her in three days.
So in the meantime, here are some pictures:
I have lowered my expectations on how much will get done on Dauntless before we launch her in three days.
So in the meantime, here are some pictures:
Being in the New Ross Boat Yard daily, now in the spring, almost daily I run into people who ask me about our passage across the Atlantic. They always ask if I was ever afraid. Yes, inwardly I do roll my eyes, but now I have my answer down rote, I was never afraid, but certainly miserable at times.
Every once in a while, sensing they actually may want a more reasoned response, I start talking about Kadey Krogen and this KK42 and what makes her so suited to where and how we go; at least until their eyes glaze over.
Knowing almost nothing about fiberglass, other than it’s made of fiber + glass, I have been talking to Gary Mooney, the GRP (fiberglass) expert of the area who has been working on Dauntless this winter and has a lifetime of experience with it on boats and all sorts of other objects.
We’ve talked about the repairs he made on Dauntless, first there were two problems in the hull:
So this got us talking about the Krogen hull, in particular, which is a cored, also called sandwich, hull:
This boat yard really caters to the commercial boats, so things like the anti-foul, are all things the fishing boats and trawlers (real ones) use and like.
So, talking of hulls with Gary, I asked him about solid fiberglass hulls. It’s clearly touted in the USA as a “better” meaning safer solution. He scoffed at that, saying that most of the fishing boats here use solid hulls to make them stronger in terms of cargo and heavy equipment, but it also makes them more fragile.
A cored hull has much more flexibility, thus I could hit a rock as I did and the hull flexed enough to crack both the inner and outer layers of fiberglass. Had the hull been solid fiberglass, it’s likely it would have broken in big chunks leaving a meter-long hole in the hull.
This happened recently to a FV just off the coast. Had they not been minutes from shore, they would have sunk. I on the other hand, carried on for another 3 months totally oblivious!
A reliable source tells me that Jim Krogen was always a proponent of the cored hull (sandwich construction) and only succumbed to public perception in the mid-90’s when they changed to making solid fiberglass hulls, below the waterline. Besides better shear strength (as my encounter with the rock showed), a cored hull also provides better acoustical and thermal insulation, when compared to solid fiberglass. This past winter, sitting outside in the wind and rain, Dauntless was dry as a bone inside, while many other boats with solid hulls, had condensation running off the walls forming little lakes. My storm windows also helped in that regard.
Dauntless was no. 148 in the 42-foot series and was made in 1988. Newer isn’t always better.
Our hull above the rub rail to the cap rail, the gunnel, also has sandwich or cored construction, but in this case, the core is much thicker, made of blocks of balsa wood and has an inner and outer wall for added strength. Also, cored hulls do provide additional buoyancy. Clearly one of the reasons that when hove-to the boat bobs morthan rolls in big seas.
Which gets to the basis of why I am not afraid.
The same cutout from another angle. The squares of balsa are easier to see.It was certainly not due to my experience as a mariner! I’m probably in the bottom 2% of experience as a mariner.
But I am probably in the top 2% of researchers and I know the difference between opinion and fact.
For 5 years before we purchased this boat, I read, I studied and I determined what capabilities a small (that I could afford) boat
needed to have to be able to travel the world, cross oceans and yet have the comforts of home. I wasn’t going to live like a monk after all.
That process of research and reading every story of ocean crossings I could find, led me to this Kadey Krogen 42. I knew this boat could handle the worst conditions, whether I was miserable or not.
My friend Larry said it this way, when we got in those chaotic
seas, 6-12 feet, short period, from all directions, off the coast of France last summer, Dauntless just seemed to settle in and not fight it. We were hanging on for dear life and she was just motoring along, wondering what all the fuss was about.
James Krogen knew how to design and build a boat that could do anything asked of it, be it bringing us home from a week-end jaunt or around the world.
That’s why I’m not afraid.
Phase I was doing he stuff that had to be done before Dauntless got her feet wet. All done except for salt water pump. For a competent person, this is a few days work; for me about three weeks.
The Electrical list is untouched, but the first four items a-d, will be done in the next days. The rest in the next two months.
Once D is out of the shed we will be able to re-rig the Paravanes and the mast. Gary’s carpenter has made another bird that got broken in the North Sea and has repaired the doors. The Rocker Stoppers are a work in progress.
For the Wood Trim, I can’t oil anything until all the sanding is done. I will do this next week, before we head out of the shed into the hard, cruel world.
Fuel tank is in the final stages of being done. Sealant has been applied and new inspection ports are ready to be installed. Anti-Foul will be applied the last day, next Friday.
Most of the heavy lifting by Gary and the New Ross Boat Yard are done or will be in the next week:
Getting the forward cabin and compartments fixed, cleaned and put away was the big monkey on my back. It was critical to get done and as long as it was unfinished the boat was unlivable.
I’ll start sleeping on board Friday. It’s feeling like my home again.
Gary is just finishing applying the second primer coat. That will get sanded tomorrow, then washed again with an Awlgrip wash (a solvent, like paint thinner) before the first finish coat goes on. At that point we will actually see the final color. I hope I like it!
I literally had my first glass of wine on board, the first since October (I’ve had wine, not just in a glass!). I do have rituals you know.
P.S. Here is a bonus video of Gary applying the second primer coat today. ( I don’t post many videos because it takes hours to upload one video sucessfullly.)
On my home page, under the Follow Me banner, there should be the titles of some of pages that are also in my Dauntless At Sea Blog, but it’s how WordPress organizes things and I have not yet figured out a better way to do it.
So far on these pages, I have included:
Until I come up with a better system or someone tells me how to make it better organized, I will put my most recent post on the very top. That way if you look at the pages often, you will know right away if something is new. If you do not, the order really doesn’t matter.
Also, while I can make a link to articles in the Economist, the Wall Street Journal is another story. I must copy text and then email that copy. So, I do this less than once a week.
I include things I am the most passionate about as a way to lead to more thoughts and better questions. I am not trying to advocate for certain ideas, as much as I want to bring to light some things that may not get said or questioned enough.
One of my primary themes is “there is no free lunch”. The more people tell me how great something is, the more skeptical I become.
I’m also skeptical of fake environmentalists. Those who profess a certain lifestyle, but only insofar as it is convenient to do so.
Today’s article from the Wall Street Journal is about that, the massive bird kill by wind turbines that everyone ignores. But when you read the accounts of those who service those turbines, the number of dead birds on the ground is horrific. https://dauntlessatsea.com/tidbits-from-todays-wall-street-journal/
Lastly, if you read the above and think I against wind turbines, you need to read better. Power from wind is not free. There is no free lunch. I at least want people to think about the consequences before implementing the “free lunch solution”.
Richard on Dauntless in Ireland
It’s going to be hard to say goodbye to Ireland, the land is gorgeous, the people wonderful and the sun shines at least once a month to remind you what it looks like.
Today, I took a day off. Every day I’ve been working on Dauntless, getting my little projects done. The new holding tank is in and connected, the bilge pump also, so forward bilge work is almost done.
So, with the sun out and the buds on the trees getting bigger by the day, I thought it would be a good day to drive to the town of Roundwood, about 70 miles NE of New Ross, about 30 south of Dublin.
Well the drive turned out to be even prettier than expected. The roads were even more picturesque and the traffic was actually minimal.
The restaurant, Byrne & Woods, lived up to expectations. Here is a link to my review:
And even just really competent ones or highly functional ones. What brings this to mind?
Another episode of Wallander of course. The Cellist. Watching the beginning, seeing her play, yes I know it’s drama, not real, but I realized how attractive I thought she was and realized it was far more than just her European nose, but was really based on nothing, other than her play.
Yet, knowing her play is fake, makes no difference. We are programmed to like what we like and I like smart, competent women.
Writing and sometimes even publishing in this blog, is my way to express my thinking. Not having that mind-mate for the first time in a long time is what’s hard.
Did you see this? You should read that! Long distance is no problem.
Oh, by the way, if you like Prosecco, as I do, you should only drink the DOCG. The DOC is a new appellation that the Italians cooked up to take advantage of the popularity of Prosecco worldwide. The problem is the DOC prosecco is made in places that are not dei colli Conegliano – Valdobbiadene, the little hills to the northwest of Treviso that make Prosecco, Prosecco. Another beautiful creation or is it brilliant?
And another story revolving around a brilliant woman.
But can we really separate beauty and brilliance?
OK, let’s get back to our Lady Dauntless.
So Dauntless is beginning her transformation to the new “Dauntless” look. In the next days’ I will be posting the details and pictures. For now, you see her in her undercoat.
A true functional beauty.
Make the Plan, Do the Plan.
So here is the plan. The first four months show little change, but after I get back from the USA in mid-October it will be a lot of cruising.
Previously I had decided to stay in Europe this coming year, but life happens and circumstances change. Therefore, In November Dauntless and I will start to head west not to return for many years.
The good news is that while it is a lot of miles, over 17,000, those miles are spread over 17 months. Since almost 10,000 miles are passage miles, in which we do about 150 miles per day, it means that over 300 days of the 500 we only have to average about 35 miles per day. Much less than last summer.
So, while nothing is in stone, this is the tentative plan and you know me: Make the Plan, Do the Plan.
The dates are somewhat firm in that to get to Korea in the fall of 2017, I must be able to get to Japan in early August, as I want to cross the Bering and North Pacific in July and early August.
This is a plan that is based on the weather, meaning it’s doable with “normal” weather. But there are a number of things that must happen:
Now of course, this depends on a few factors besides just the weather. I could be kidnapped by some Greek and decide to spend a year in Lesbos with the rest of the refugees. Some other mechanical or personal issue could overtake plans. But most likely, the weather does not cooperate. For this plan to work, I must have favorable weather during the winter and spring along the west coast of Central and North America.
If the winds do not cooperate, then we’ll spend the winter and spring in Central America and Mexico, then come up the west coast to B.C. and S.E. Alaska for the summer and winter over in S.E. Alaska, a fantastically beautiful destination all in itself.
This Plan B is not a terrible outcome and I’m sure many will think it should be Plan A, but I’ll let Fate and the wx gods decide. At best it’s a 50-50 proposition, or maybe better yet, 49-49-02, the 02% being something unforeseen like the Greeks or something.
Want to join me at any part? I can always use help, extra hands and advice, and most of all, the company. We will be doing a lot of miles, over 17,000 but who’s counting! There will be many opportunities in the next 17 months, but the better times (summer vacation) and destinations, (Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, Alaska) will fill before the more tedious parts.
Oh, wait, there are no longer any tedious parts.
In any case, drop me a line and let me know your thoughts, no matter how tenuous.
Richard on Dauntless
I expect to be in the place or nearby by the date in the column to the left.
.E.g. I expect to arrive in the Lesser Antilles on 22 December.
|25-May-16||Ireland, Feet Wet|
|05-Aug-16||Spain, San Sabastian|
|25-Aug-16||Spain, A Coruna|
|15-Oct-16||Spain, A Coruna|
|20-May-17||Pac NW, Seattle|
|14-Oct-17||Busan, South Korea|
|01-Nov-17||Yeosu, S. Korea|
“My lab is a place where my guilt over what I haven’t done is supplanted by all of the things that I am getting done”
This is as good a place to start as any.
After yesterday’s post, I felt I had done something if only to document what still needed to be done. It didn’t have the effect I had expected, instead of accomplishment, I felt intimidated.
Yesterday’s post was also different in that usually I write a draft, upload the photos I want, then edit the next day, add pictures and post. But yesterday, I was in a hurry and wrote and posted within an hour, with minimal editing, thus you can see how my mood changed even in the course of the writing as evident in the last line.
After a number of bright (only spotty rain), warm (temps in the 60’s) days here in the south and east of Ireland, yesterday dawned like a winter day, dark, cloudy, steady drizzle. Actually, typical pre-warm frontal weather, the result of an inverted trough, the low pressure system being to the south and the warm front moving in from the ESE.
Dauntless is not my lab, but it is an instrument in that lab. It facilitates me being in nature, good or bad, hot or cold.
The worse the weather, the more I have this need to put my face into it. Certainly having to go to the bathroom, to pee, every few hours drives the need to go out there and check the elements, though the phrase to hold on for dear life, has no exaggeration at that point.
I’ve been trying to determine the best way to talk, to write about books that have a profound influence over me. I know many of my readers like the boating adventures and may not care about my soliloquys about life. So if you have any suggestions that I can get to work with WordPress, email me. I have made some additional pages, but don’t like the look so far.
Though it seems I have a wide interest in things, that interest really revolves around two main cores, science and history. Thus my interest in Paleoclimatology, a field that a number of times in my life I considered going back to school to earn a PhD. The last time about 15 years ago when I had just started teaching, I had attended a symposium at the National Center for Atmospheric Science (NCAR) on climate change. I was offered a very appealing opportunity, but having moved back to NYC for my mother, and having already given up a good job to do so, life prevailed.
But that Fate is what put me here now, writing this. Dauntless and I exploring the world at 7 miles per hour.
During the last month, I have been reading three books, all non-fiction, all three different, but amazing. All three are fascinating in their own right and I have not finished any of them completely, I think in large part because I don’t want them to end:
Having grown up near Sheridan Square I had a familiarity with Sheridan, yet realized I knew nothing about him other than him being a Calvary man doing the Civil War. Then, just before leaving NYC this past March, I realized that the gold statue across from the Plaza Hotel at the SE corner of Central Park was also Sheridan.
So when I came across this book and in the opening pages was captivated by how much I did not know I knew I had to keep reading! As obvious as it sounds now, Sheridan as Corps Commander, was the first to use infantry and cavalry as a combined weapon.
Also, the insights one learned about other personalities of the war, e.g. How effective Custer was, or how Meade although in total disagreement, when told by Grant to support Sheridan, actually did so, unlike so many other generals of the war who let their jealousies get in the way.
Science is about making connections that most don’t or can’t see. Like science, my lists are more than lists of things I must do. They are maps of things to learn and things to practice. It’s what keeps me awake at night. The puzzle in the sky that is multiple realities, that makes it rain on your side of the hill, but not mine. Or the three prong plug that can run two different lights. They seem different, but are the same.
Thanks for listening.
Amazon links to the above three books:
Or am I flying and that’s why my head is in the clouds?
Such weighty questions, so little time.
What else is new, as my friends would say?
I did make a list of all the things that still need to be done between now and the next few weeks. It’s a long list. Most of the small things I will do, as few big things are being done by the painter Gary and the Boat Yard. So, what’s still to be done:
That’s pretty much it for me! I figure realistically, this list will be complete my 2018, though I will strive to get most of it done sooner.
Just goes to show that one thing I do well is plan; not so well, do.
I need a real doer in my life.
This winter has been the first real refit since we bought Dauntless three years ago. When we bought this Krogen 42, she was in great shape, in fact the best shape of the 8 KK 42’s I looked at. She had the lowest engine hours, only 1650, and some features we wanted: dual heads, four windows in the rear salon and no built-in furniture in the salon. The Flexsteel leather furniture that the previous owner had gotten for the boat was like new. The nicest leather we had ever felt. We talked about that leather for two years before we actually were in a position to get D.
But with this little use, comes issues that are a result of that little use.
The port side fuel tank started leaking this past summer. It was coming from the forward inboard seam. On opening up the inspection port, it had a lot of rust. More rust than I had seen in the starboard tank.
Now since I had had the boat, I’d had problems with water getting into the tank. During the last days of my Atlantic Passage, this became a critical problem that had me changing or emptying fuel filters every few hours. You can read those details here: Dauntless-crosses-the-north-atlantic-the-post-mortem
Last summer in Holland, with the help of Marinus, another Krogen owner, I finally figured out the source of the water was the stink’in fuel vent. In one of the few poor decisions Kadey Krogen made in the design of this boat, the fuel vent was under the rub rail. As the Krogen rolls its way across the Atlantic this became an issue when I was in very big seas and the stabilizers were not working as well as they should for reasons related to operator (ME) error.
To fix the tank issues, we decided to add three more larger inspection ports. This will allow the two-part epoxy sealant to be applied.
Looking at the pictures of the opened tank, one can see the rust pattern from the water getting into the vent.
Also, when I had purposely overfilled this tank by about 10 gallons, in part to see what would happen, I had the unpleasant surprise to see fuel leaking out of the tank into the bilge. It was not apparent where this fuel was coming from. This picture shows the fitting itself was poorly installed and the screws used rusted and basically left small holes for fuel to get out or even rain water that was on top of the tank to get in.
From the amount of rust, this tank was not sued for quite some time, years, but left with some water. Once I got the boat, this tank had been the problem child, therefore I had a tendency not to use it as much, which ended up exacerbating the problem.
Here are some before pictures. The after pictures will come when done.
In October when we pulled her from the water, we found both old and new damage.
The new was from my second rock encounter in Finland. In the first Finnish rock meeting, Dauntless rode up the rock on her keel.
But the second one was more egregious in that I hit the side of the rock with the side of the hull that left a four-foot scrape in the hull which was deep enough to cause a hairline crack all the way through the hull. Me Bad.
So in looking to repair that damage, we also
found some old damage that had been repaired, but not well or not completely. How do I know? Because in the three years I have owned her, whenever it rained, I had water entering the forward bilge. In addition, the paint on the bulkhead that separates the forward bilge from the amidships, had peeled, since water was coming in behind it.
Both those issues have been repaired and even though Dauntless sat on the hard in the wind and rain all winter, only in the last days was she put into the shed for painting, the forward bilge has remained bone dry.
Now, the engine room bilge still has rain water getting in there, but I actually think that is as normal as one can expect in a 25-year-old boat.
I am also very pleased that everyone who has worked on the Krogen for the last 6 months has commented on the quality of: the workmanship, the design and the build.
I decided to paint the entire hull, since three years of docking was starting to show. And the incentive of a new, different for a Kadey Krogen, paint job will make me both more careful and thoughtful.
In the next weeks, I will enumerate the other jobs we, I have done for this coming season. That we have many, many miles to go, makes me feel even better about the preparation we are doing now.
The pictures show Dauntless outside when they had finished the bottom rehab, which meant repairing all the nicks and gouges, new fiberglass along the keel, gel-coat along the keel, then preparing the hull for two coats of epoxy and one of the tie-coat, which allows the anti-foul to adhere to the epoxy.
So I am sitting in my little B&B in New Ross, County Wexford, Ireland, watching a Korean Drama called “Marriage, Not Dating”. An apt title for a cutesy drama.
Korean Dramas are my one reliable escape; giving my brain a rest from the planning of tomorrow and the reflection of yesterday.
There is still much to do on Dauntless, and while the bigger jobs are getting done, I do the small things that have been on the to do list for too long, such as:
We should be back in the water mid-May, then I will mosey on down to Waterford before heading north to Scotland at the end of the month.
Then, returning to Waterford in mid-June for a couple of weeks, as I have a quick trip to NYC, before leaving Ireland for good in early July.
I’ll miss Ireland; for such a well-travelled person, I am still amazed that for all the years I have been coming to Europe, 30 plus years at that, I only found the gem that Ireland is just recently. A really shame, considering the amount of time I have spent wondering where I would live if I could live anyplace. Italy and the Netherlands were always near the top of that list, then Korea jumped up in the last 10 years and even Spain has interest. But for an English speaker, Ireland is just like Spain or Italy, except I’m fluent in the language. And maybe because it is such a small country, like Latvia, Ireland is full of wonderful, helpful, friendly people.
The fact that they talk like New Yorkers just makes me feel even more like home. Now I can also see why the Italians and Irish of NY did not always get along so well. They are virtually identical and we all know that similarity breeds contempt.
With Dauntless entering my life, I no longer have to decide where to live. Dauntless has given me the ability to live the life of a gypsy. Don’t like this town, go to the next one. Don’t like this country, go to the next one.
I’m not a negative person. In my life I have fought for those who cannot fight for themselves, kids, students, old folks in particular, but for myself, not much. I don’t like conflict. I’d rather move on. Just another aspect of living on a boat that at least for me makes life easier, not harder.
Seeing the world, being immersed in nature, whether you like it or not, are all benefits of being on a boat and crossing oceans.
Some of you may remember the long term plan was to do to Northeast Asia, Japan & Korea, after my time in Europe was up. That time is finally almost here. Earlier I had thought to spend another year in Europe, in Spain, but now realize it’s time to move on. Life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Corny, but true, much like many of the Korean dramas I watch.
Therefore, I’m excited that in just weeks’ time, we’ll be back in the water, looking a bit different and living up to the name Dauntless.
And with the end of summer will also signal the end of Europe for us for a long time. Oh, I’ll still fly here to see both new and old friends, but Dauntless is heading to places only dreamed about.
I can’t wait.